The Whited Fen Restoration Project will protect and improve the nine-acre wetland along Whited Avenue in Minnetonka, through removal of invasive plants and re-establishment native habitat.
Whited Fen is classified as a rich fen floating mat, a rare wetland type in the watershed. The wetland has unique native plants, including uncommon species like cranberry and cotton grass. These important species are being threatened by invasive plants. If these harmful plants are not managed, there will be long term negative impacts to this unique resource.
Whited Fen Community Meeting
Monday, March 6, 2023 | 6:30-8 PM | Glen Lake Activity Center (14350 Excelsior Blvd, Minnetonka, MN)
Planning efforts are underway to restore White Fen, a rare and valuable wetland. Come learn about why Whited Fen is so special, the planning efforts to restore it, and your role in helping. Nine Mile Creek Watershed District and City of Minnetonka staff will share information and answer questions.
- Improve wetland health- remove invasive species like buckthorn and cattails that harm wetland health
- Protect wetland quality- where possible, establish upland buffers to minimize erosion, pollutants/nutrient loading, and minimize opportunity for invasive plants to grow back
- Preserve wetland long term- Work with the City of Minnetonka and landowners to promote wetland education and a community involvement to maintain and preserve the wetland into the future
In 2022, the Nine Mile Creek Watershed District (NMCWD) completed a study that looked at all wetlands within the watershed, prioritizing efforts to protect and restore those wetlands of both the highest quality, as well as having the greatest threat to impact. Through this process, four wetlands were identified for further analysis, and ultimately the Whited Fen was prioritized for improvements first. This wetland is surrounded by residential property, along with two parcels owned by the City of Minnetonka.
NMCWD believes Whited Fen can be protected for generations to come with an adaptive management plan. This plan would include removal of invasive plants, establishing a wetland buffer with native plants, educating landowners on the importance of the wetland function, and creating a public amenity through a wetland viewing platform and signage on city property. NMCWD would lead the restoration process, funding the efforts to both remove invasive plant species and establish a wetland buffer in locations where residents would be willing to install them on the upland edges of the wetland. NMCWD also intends to work with surrounding landowners on access and maintenance agreements to do the work.
- Nine-acres of high-quality wetland habitat restored
- Up to two-acres of new wetland buffer
- Improved views and access to the wetland from city property
Tentative Project Schedule
- Landowner engagement will begin in early 2023.
- Following landowner engagement, the NMCWD Board of Managers will consider ordering the project.
- After the project is ordered, final project designs are completed.
- Construction start depends on the completion of design, permitting, and access agreements with landowners.
Whited Fen Wetland Restoration fact sheet (PDF)
Wetland Assessment Report (PDF)
High Quality Wetland Scoping, Prioritization, and Feasibility Report (PDF)
Contact Brett Eidem, Natural Resources Project and Planning Manager, at email@example.com or 952-356-1999